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Posted: July 31, 2017

Partially paralyzed Olympic high jumper Jamie Nieto beats odds, walks new bride down aisle


By Natalie Dreier, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

EL CAJON, Calif. —

Many thought a former Olympic high jumper thought he was going to be stuck in a wheelchair for the rest of his life, but he beat the odds and kept a promise to his bride as a wedding day gift to her.

Jamie Nieto was injured when he misjudged a back flip over a year ago while helping other jumpers. The two-time Olympian was left partially paralyzed after the accident. Doctors were not sure if he’d ever walk again. But he knew he would fully recover, The Associated Press reported.

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Nieto proposed to his now-wife six months after his accident. Shevon Stoddard was there through his journey, ESPN reported. She’s also an athlete, competing in the hurdles.

Prior to the wedding, he went into the church using a walker, but a cane was waiting in case he needed it during or after the ceremony. He didn’t. Nieto, with the help of a groomsman, got into place where he waited for his bride.

After the ceremony, with help from his wife, he was able to walk the length of 15 pews and five steps to waiting car holding on to his wife for support.

“He set a goal, and he accomplished it, so that means a lot,” groomsman Kevin Henderson told ESPN.


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